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Research Assistant - Finding Fish: Art, Science, and Community in a Changing Climate

  • Assist in identification/prepping of grant applications for a collaborative, community-engaged project encompassing climate sociology, theater, and oral history.
  • Assist PI’s and community partners with organizing stakeholder workshops and staged readings in Justice 40 communities in Maine.
  • Manage advance and on-ground logistics for the above.
  • Participate in oral history training with PI’s.
  • Attend all PI meetings (online), stakeholder workshops, and staged readings (in person or hybrid).
  • Manage tech/recording logistics for oral history collections.
  • Work with NU Library on creation of digital repository for pre and post-production oral histories and archiving relevant material culture.
  • Lead development of website for the project.
  • Location:

    Boston, on campus, some site visits in Maine

  • Remote Work:


  • Semester:

    Spring 2024


Doctoral Program
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  • Project Title

    Finding Fish: Art, Science, and Community in a Changing Climate

  • Faculty / Project Lead

    Ali Glassie

  • Project Description

    Our project engages fisheries stakeholders, scientists, and coastal communities through arts-based civic dialogue centering on FINDING FISH, a play written by Carlyle Brown. This play, which is set in Maine, in an unspecified near future with rising seas, decimated fisheries, and unstable coastal livelihoods, renders fishing down foodwebs into locally-specific dramatic form. Written in consultation with fisheries scientists and historians, FINDING FISH models a synthesis between science, policy, and the arts. By inserting a selkie, a seal-human shapeshifter from Celtic myth into a fishing family’s domestic drama, the play explores the dynamics of gender in commercial fisheries and foregrounds the ways that different forms of knowledge intersect with cultural imaginaries. Although, as Ayana Elizabeth Johnson has written, “ocean conservation is a matter of cultural preservation,” the cultural imaginaries that might inform climate resilience in coastal communities are all-too-often absent from decision-making conversations. Not only that, FINDING FISH, which is set in a “post-aquacalyptic” version of the Gulf of Maine that shaped Brown’s maritime career, has never been performed in Maine. Our project brings FINDING FISH to Maine, to facilitate reflection on the entanglements between identity, knowledge, power, and livelihood in coastal communities. Through a free traveling production and a series of workshops and public conversations with stakeholders, our project returns this play to its home communities. Through workshops with stakeholders, we will co-design public events that use the play as a vessel for exploring themes of identity, vulnerability, and place. These events will provide opportunities for scientists, fishers, and other stakeholders to engage in shared reflection and dialogue toward shared learning and deepened understanding of each other and the webs of relationships that together constitute the Gulf of Maine. Ultimately, through eco-theater and community engagement, Finding Fish: Art, Science, and Community in a Changing Climate foregrounds the dynamics of gender in fisheries and aquaculture, promotes ethical engagement with human and nonhuman keepers of ecological knowledge, and facilitates conversation about the future of fishing communities in the play’s home waters and beyond. Principal Investigators: Ali Glassie (Northeastern), Kate Olson (Maine College of Art), Kelli Shermeyer (University of Delaware)

  • Qualifications Necessary

    Advanced training in literary studies, marine and environmental science and/or adjacent social science/humanities fields. Strong interests in community engagement, and scientific storytelling. Familiarity with oral history research methods Strong communication, organizational, and editorial skills. Openness to working with a multidisciplinary team of PI's. Access to a car

  • Hours per Week

    20 Hour Position